Whether it's simply a short email message that's required, or - more likely - a formal letter, most employers expect some form of covering letter to be included along with any CVs they receive. For sales roles in particular, first impressions are important, so extra effort should be put into producing a high quality job application that really wows potential employers when they receive it. This article will explain how to create a covering letter that is the perfect complement to a well-written CV.

Sales assistant cover letter tips.

Covering letters should:

  • always be written from scratch, using your CV and the job description.
  • identify the skills you have, and how they relate to the job
  • give potential employers an overview of what is contained within your CV. For this reason
  • be concise, yet attractive and well written - around 300 words long. 

What to include in a cover letter.

The covering letter should contain information on who you are, where you saw the role advertised, and why you decided to apply for it. It should also explain what experience you have that makes you suitable, and why you are so passionate about the specific role.

Rather than simply saying you are good at something, you should aim to use examples to back up your claims. So, rather than saying that you have a proven track record in sales, describe how you won sales assistant of the month for three consecutive months, for example. Experience does not need to be directly sales related, however. As an example, you may choose to describe how you spend your spare time managing a local children's football team, as this will indicate that you have some admirable qualities.

The formatting.

Traditional covering letters need to be professionally formatted and, if possible, addressed to the right person. If a name is not available, "Dear Sir/Madam" can be used, and it can be concluded with "Yours Faithfully" as a salutation. It's worth recognising that going the extra mile to find out the name of the recipient – by calling the company – may indicate extra commitment. Employers will be looking for candidates who have an understanding of their business, and the necessary research skills required to successfully cater to the needs of potential customers. For this reason, it's often a good idea to include a few sentences explaining why the company particularly appeals, or to give an opinion on a recent event affecting the company, which will show that the you have been proactive, and completed thorough research.

To download a cover letter template, please visit our CV hub.